Humans of the Catskills: Steve Burnett

Steve and Kristie Burnett

Journey to the Catskills:

I came to Bovina in 1989. I was exiting yet another marriage and needed a place to ride motorcycles and drink beer. Back then Bovina was an unknown sleeping beauty. It was my escape from NYC until I started the farm in 2008. Then the full-time labors/learning began in an agricultural habitat not designed for Citi/idiots like me.


My wife and I are full-time farmers. We currently grow fruits and vegetables, make a distinctive hot sauce, and hunt with our GSP dogs. The farm we’ve built is not unlike what you’d find 150 years ago, except for the diesel, plastic, and electricity. We’re organic and grow most all our food, heat with wood, fish, and hunt.


I draw. Currently I’m drawing from my farm experience and from the stories my grandparents shared with me about being immigrant farmers in Iowa… where I was born.

Happiness Is:

Happiness is engaging in import, ongoing activity. In farming you wake up every day with meaningful problems to solve, there are miracles to witness, there are physical efforts that keep you aware that the food you grow is not just delicious but necessary.

Favorite Dish:

We make a risotto using our wood smoked turkey stock and available vegetables that causes the ‘omg’ moment. We specialize in heirloom tomatoes so in August eating them in every way defines the good life.

Ideal Country Home:

Our home is about our table. What we put on it and share with friends and family is quite literally our life, love, and pursuit of happiness. The simple expression of what we believe and do with our lives is put on plates as a blessing to share.